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Artists House Returns

John Snyder’s Artists House label released only a dozen or so albums during its brief existence in the late 1970s. The label folded before the ’80s rolled around and shuttered with no vault of master tapes to turn into profits by reissuing them down the road. Those tapes belonged to the artists-folk like Jim Hall, Andrew Hill and Art Pepper-because Artists House was the kind of label that gave ultimate control to the artist. It was idealism in practice.

Recently resurrected, Artists House will continue to do what it did in the 1970s, with Snyder at the helm of the company, not the creative process. The label’s artists will own their master tapes and approve all aspects of the production, from the music to the album art. The seven artists currently in the label’s stable range from folk to swamp-rock to jazz acts. Bob Brookmeyer and Kenny Wheeler will release an album called Island on Artists House soon.

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